Yes, I know, it was Derby day as well, but this is always a competitive meeting with plenty of forward pointers!
MUSSELBURGH – Saturday June 1st
Going – Good To Firm (Good in places)
This meeting has proved a decent pointer to Royal Ascot and beyond in recent seasons with the feature race and the two-year-old contest very reliable pointers.
1.50 1m toteplacepot Handicap (3yo) (Class 4)
The first two look a bit better than Class 4 standard. LLAGERYB raced towards the rear, made steady progress up the straight and soon put the race to bed after leading one furlong out. He looked to have a fair bit in hand and can advance on this.
CORN SNOW took it up two out having raced prominently. The first two were clear of most of the runners and the form should prove strong. Corn Snow can be placed to win in similar company.
GREY STREET came from well back to take third place, closing fast on the first two in the closing stages. He’s going the right way, seemingly stepping up on last year’s efforts, and there should be race for him in the near future.
2.20 5f ToteScoop6 Edinburgh Castle 2yo Stakes (Class 2)
Regularly a decent contest which yields contenders capable of making their mark in Pattern company.
The first two broke well and were pretty much neck and neck over the final two furlongs. SLEEPER KING, a close fourth in maiden at York first time up, travelled well for much of the way and dug deep to hold on in the closing stages. He showed plenty of pace over this sharp five and will presumably be aimed at Ascot.
JUSTICE DAY came under pressure from two out but dug deep and was only run out of it close home. His previous efforts suggested this sharp five wouldn’t bring out the best in him at this stage, and a switch to a stiffer five or back to six furlongs would do no harm.
JACQUOTTE DELAHAYE picked up from two furlongs out and finished a close third. She looks to have plenty of ability and will find easier tasks.
SUZI’S CONNOISSEUR, a winner here on debut was by no means disgraced in fourth and will find easier opportunities.
On evidence of previous renewals all entries here are worth keeping an eye on so make a note of WITHERNSEA, VINE DE NADA and PIGEON PIE once they are dropped down to less exacting company.
2.55 1m 4f 100yds totepool.com Tradesman’s Derby (3yo) Handicap (Class 4)
A £20,000 added contest which gives a good incentive for trainers with horses rated 80 or less.
EMERGING raced prominently and took up the running three out. He was headed two out but had battled back to lead by the furlong pole and asserted in the final furlong. This was a taking performance by David Elsworth’s colt who won over a mile on the all weather in the winter. He was stepping up significantly in trip here and looks well capable of seeing out a bit further.
ROYAL SKIES put in to the winner two out and led for a while but was collared in the final furlong. This was arguably his best effort this term.
HASHEEM stayed on well in the closing stages to finish close up to the second. He won nicely at Newcastle over ten furlongs and this trip didn’t seem a problem on handicap debut. The experience will help and he looks a decent prospect.
3.30 1m 4f 100yds totepool Edinburgh Cup Handicap (3yo) (Class 2)
A catching performance by the winner of one of Musselburgh’s biggest prizes of the season. DASHING STAR came from off the post to lead inside the final furlong and to win a shade cosily. He competed in the Dante at York, finishing eighth to Derby second Libertarian on that occasion and the company was less taxing here. That being said he looks a nice sort at this level and it seems unlikely that he has finished winning. The step up in trip seemed beneficial.
NARU made a brave attempt to make all, sticking to his task grittily under pressure but mastered in the closing stages. He’s more exposed than some here, indeed won three times on the all-weather, but seems an honest sort with plenty of ability.
Last week’s Haydock winner VAN PERCY had every chance but couldn’t get to the first two. He raced keenly early on which may not have helped his cause and retrospect the traffic problems he encountered at Haydock may have helped rather than hindered his cause.
ESTEAMING won a Class 4 event at York but this move up in class proved just too much. To his credit he was not far away in the closing stages and will have chances at a slightly lower level.
BLUE WAVE, twice a winner this season and busily campaigned, chased the leader in the alst two furlongs but lost a couple of places close home.
The five were clear and will be worth monitoring for future engagements.
ALLNECESSARYFORCE had severe steering problems, losing all chance when going very wide on the final bend. He ran second to Blue Wave at Kempton earlier which suggests something other than direction of the track is bothering him.
4.30 5f totepool Mobile Handicap (Class 4)
A cracking finish to this six runner race. ROTHESAY CHANCER was slow away, which is not untypical, but produced a fine burst of speed to wrest the race near the line under an all action ride from Graham Lee. This one has a fair amount of speed but probably hasn’t won as much as might be expected, though this was his fourth victory at Musselburgh.
FLASH CITY led and rallied when challenged, only just being pipped in a tight finish. He has only won once in 22 efforts.
BOSUN BREEZE led inside the final furlong but was run out of it in the last few yards. He hit form to win this race last year then followed up twice, so might be worth a glance if turning out in the next couple of weeks.
TAX FREE could have picked these up and carried them at one time, but he’s not a sharp as he once was and indeed this was his first foray in a Class 4 handicap since his three-year-old days. He made an effort form over a furlong out but could make no impression in the final furlong. A fair effort, but what you see is what you are likely to get nowadays.
5.05 1m 1f toteexacta Handicap (Class 4)
CLASSIC COLORI made up for an unfortunate defeat when his rider mistook the winning post at Haydock last week. He just held on after a sustained battle with /assizes, though Karaka Jack was closing fast. The winner is in good heart and on a reasonable mark which isn’t likely to alter much for this tight win.
KARAKA JACK was held up going well for Adrian Nicholls but the gap narrowed as he went for it, the gelding just hanging fire as he was asked to go through. He fairly rattled home once in the clear and would have been in front in another 20 yards. He remains in decent form and there should be another race for him if things fall better.
ASSIZES led two out and stuck to his task all the way to the line. This was a good deal more encouraging than recent efforts.
SPES NOSTRA set the pace but raced much too keenly. He should produce better than the last of six he managed here.
5.35 7f totetrifecta Handicap (Class 4)
Muredach Kelly reported that REPOSER, a double winner previously, was unsuited by the fast ground. He does have a round action and this may be true, so sixth place may not have been a bad effort. It’s also worth bearing in mind that he helped set a very strong pace with another in-form contender in SNOW BAY, the latter also finishing well beaten.
POWERFUL PRESENCE just held on from Alenjandro. He’s a well exposed sort and ALENJANDRO has proved nothing special previously so it’s not a race I would get over excited about if carrying the form forward.
KALK BAY finished with a rattle and needs further, his proximity to the winner presumably being aided by coming off a strong pace. He looks to be dropping back to a manageable mark.